Minakshi Menon studied medieval Indian history at Jawaharlal Nehru University and the University of Delhi, and then took her PhD in History of Science and Science Studies at the University of California San Diego. She has held two postdoctoral fellowships, the first in Department II (Lorraine Daston) of the MPIWG and the second at the Berlin Center for the History of Knowledge and Humboldt University. She is currently engaged in completing a book manuscript titled “Empiricism’s Empire: Natural-Knowledge Making, State-Making and Governance in East India Company India, 1784–1830.” She is also the editor of a special issue of South Asian History and Culture on “Indigenous Knowledges and Colonial Sciences in South Asia,” which will appear in 2020. She co-chairs the Forum for the History of Science in Asia, a special interest group of the History of Science Society.
Minakshi’s research project, “Hortus Indicus Malabaricus: the Eurasian Life of a Seventeenth-Century 'European' Botanical Classic,” studies the plant descriptions and illustrations in the 12-volume Hortus Malabaricus (published 1678-1693), in order to understand the natural knowledge-making practices of Dutch colonists, Brahman and Ezhava physicians, and other groups, in the Malayalam-speaking parts of southwest India.
“Transferrable Surveys: Natural History from the Hebrides to South India,” Journal of Scottish Historical Studies 38 (1), 2018, pp. 143–159.
“Grains of Paradise and Reading Against the Grain: Telling Stories About Science in the Global South,” in Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 66 (2017), pp. 83-86.
“Medicine, Money and the Making of the East India Company State: William Roxburgh in Madras, c. 1790” in Histories of Medicine and Healing in the Indian Ocean World (eds. Anna Elizabeth Winterbottom and Facil Tesfaye), Palgrave Macmillan, 2015, pp. 151–178.
Introduction: Indigenous Knowledges and Colonial Sciences in South AsiaMORE
The Hortus Malabaricus Images in the Context of a European Visual TraditionMORE
Science in a "Minor Language"MORE
Machine Translation Before and After the Iron CurtainMORE
Chasing Science on the Move: Translation, Domestication, TransformationMORE
Of Lexical Shells and Textual Monstrosities: Tales of Translation in Late Imperial ChinaMORE
Tensions between Variability of Ancient Texts and Normativity of Databases: Case StudiesMORE
From Clay to Modern Editions: the Metamorphoses of NumbersMORE
Premodern Conversations Series
Sanskrit, Plants, and Paper: Botanical Knowledge Making in East India Company Bengal, c. 1790MORE
Presentations, Talks, & Teaching Activities
Open Discussion: Decolonizing the History of Science in Asia
Joint Roundtable: Revisiting Master Narratives
University of Applied Sciences, Berlin: Politics of Collecting and Knowledge Production
University of Warwick: Therapeutics in Circulation: Materia Medica and the (Early) Modern World
History of Science Society Annual Meeting, Utrecht University
SPHERE, CNRS & Université Paris Diderot: H. T. Colebrooke et les historiographies des sciences en Sanscrit
Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi: Therapeutic Commodities—Trade, Transmission, and the Material Culture of Global Medicine, 1600–2000
History of Science Society Annual Meeting, Toronto: Roundtable "Rethinking Histories of Science and Medicine: Beyond Eurocentrism and Postcolonialism"
Lichtenberg-Kolleg, Georg-August-Universität Göttingen
Eighteenth Century Scottish Studies Society, Annual Meeting
International Conference: The European Impact on the Indian Ocean World, Indian Ocean World Centre, McGill University